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Abstract

The legitimacy of elections cannot be separated from the competency, professionalism and independence of the institution administering them. In Zambia, the Electoral Commission of Zambia (ecz) is the institution entrusted by law with the administration of elections. The Constitution purports to establish it as an independent or autonomous body, detached from political considerations. This chapter, however, argues that the ecz, like many other institutions in the country, is beholden to the executive and lacks autonomy. To demonstrate this, the chapter discusses the historical foundation of the Commission, the establishment, composition, functions and powers of the Commission, as well as the financing of the Commission and its relations with key stakeholders such as opposition political parties, civil society and donors.

In: Democracy and Electoral Politics in Zambia